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The 2014 general elections are over and long gone, and everybody seems to have settled down. The common man’s anger, anguish and frustration with political corruption, apathy and crony capitalism seems to have been replaced by serious concerns over the monsoon’s (non) performance, which, the new government claims, is causing price rise.

After a weak start in June, the monsoon finally made its presence felt in July and is likely to remain strong at least until the middle of August, if one is to believe the India Meteorological Department. Total monsoon rainfall since June 1 has been 25% below average. The deficit was as high as 43% two weeks ago, but rainfall has picked up since then. It was 10% above normal on Monday, said a report in The Economic Times on Tuesday, July 29, 2014.

So, it seems a good time to devote some time and space to basic concerns like agriculture, education and environment. That’s what this issue of CfB (Change for Better) tries to do, with writings from the best. You have Prof G N Devy, the Sahitya Akademi award winning author, linguist, literary scholar and cultural activist, wondering if an “entire society is seen as a vast university, every community in it an open treasury of knowledge, as if they were collectively a vast reference library, and the institution of learning a co-curator, a co-supervisor of that knowledge?”

You have oral tales from The Dangs, the region on the borders of today’s Gujarat and Maharashtra. For centuries, this fertile region has been ruled by one or another ruler from outside and the author of this piece, Aruna Joshi, a researcher and publisher of tribal literature for several years, makes the point that while the tiller, keeping his needs to the minimum, has cherished the thick of the jungle - the flora and fauna, the waters and mountains that have actually entered his pantheon - the ruler’s concern has been the revenue, from field and from forest.

In Mega Trends, there is Jal Dindi, the sacred river journey on the rivers Indrayani and Bhima that brings together so-called illiterate and literate, urbanites and villagers on a common platform, to contribute and to gain through the divine goal of conserving the health of our aquatic ecosystems.

And, finally there are tributes to the humane side of a footballer whose splendid achievements at the World Cup 2014 made headlines, and the integrity, wisdom and compassion of a recently departed writer, whose minor classic will stay forever with his readers.

The surprise element could be a shrink reminding us that, come election or (no) rain, it’s a ‘Wonderful World.’

Anosh Malekar

Comments   

#1 M.A.KAZI 2014-08-28 04:13
This article is 'Wonderful' indeed! Anosh Malekar has summarised many wonderful events in a single page.
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